Wednesday, January 28, 2009


You know, I am sitting here thinking about Shane. So I have decided to make a post about him. Awww...

Do you know how lucky I feel to have Shane? Jeez...when I think how my life could have ended up if I hadnt met only makes me love him even more. Shane works so hard for our little family. From the day he moved up the island when we were just dating, he has been working hard to take care of both of us. He was taught hard work as a child, thank you Brian and Lynda. He knows that his family is the most important thing to think about. He goes to work each day, no matter how much he doesnt want to sometimes, because he wants to make sure we are taken care of. Shane has such a great heart. An amazing sense of humor. He can make me smile no matter what...even when I am mad AT him and dont want to smile. I love seeing both him and Rylend light up when he comes home from work. He is an amazing daddy and seeing Rylend's smile when he sees his daddy proves it to you.

One of my friends from high school, Maya, just reminded me of a memory from 10th grade that I had totally forgotten about. We were in Mr. Mcnairy's Washington State history class and were checking out a map of the state (goofing around, as always) and you could see the top bit of Oregon on it as well. We were checking out the random town names and laughing when all of a sudden Maya went ""OOO JENNI LOOK!! ALOOOOOOHA!!! I am going to live THERE someday! That would be sweeeeeet!" We were joking about how there is a place in Oregon called Aloha and making up what it would be like...A year later I had forgotten that day, but met Shane. And look...he is from Aloha and now...we live here! Crazy....

I remember after the first time I met Shane. It was at EFY my first year in 2003. The last song of the night at one of the dances we have there. And I had no one to dance with. Then I see him sitting over near the corner, by himself, head in hands. I decide to disregard my usual rule of girls do not ask...and head over to ask him to dance with me. All I can remember from that dance is telling him about the island...and his laugh. If you know know how is laugh in unforgettable. I saw him one other time that week. Got a picture taken with him and got his email address. Then must say forgot about him.
A few months later, I get an email from Shane Merritt and rack my brain to remember who that is. When I finally do, I smile and open yahoo messenger and start to chat with him. From that day on, we chat. Sometimes daily. Sometimes a month or two stretches by with no talking at all. Sometimes we talk for 4 hours straight. Others only a few minutes. We find out all about eachother. But thats as far as I go. I was in a very steady relationship. I remember talking to Megan about this "weird guy who is stalking me on IM" lol. I was actually freaked out about him he always said love ya at the end of the conversation with that winky face...Shane is a flirt. Go figure. But its also just his personality. He didnt love me. He is just a goof like nothing else. But still...I acutally didnt like it and even avoided him a bit. But for some reason, I couldnt avoid him for long.
He is supposed to come visit me in May of 2004. But that doesnt happen. I am actually relieved...I didnt know what to do with the idea of him visiting after only meeting him that one time. The we request to be in the same group at EFY with his friend Robby and Kandra. I am nervous as HECK to me in the same group as my "stalker" But Kandra has been tons of fun to talk to online and we will be I go. And it is fun. I like Shane...but I dont want anything else. I see him and Kandra...I know what is going on between them. And I have Scott.
Scott...I have to deal with that. At EFY that year I realize alot about life...about myself. And I learn what I DO want in my life. My beliefs. MY dreams. So I decide to break up with Scott. And get better in church. And go after my dreams. I dont want to date anymore for a bit. I want to be me. I feel pulled to Shane...but I dont wan to go there. I see him and her...I know its not meant for me...and I dont fully mind. I want to
So I go home and break up with Scott and get ready to enjoy my senior of high school. But Shane keeps calling. And emailing. And then he comes and visits me a month after EFY. I thought it was nice...but didnt expect that a few days after his visit I would be dating him. So I think..."ok..summer fling. It wont last past that because of the distance..."


He moved up a few months later...proposed...Shane knew he wanted me. He actually had to convince me that I wanted him. He said I love you first. I made him explain to me how he knew....and didnt say it back for some time. He waited though. We went through tough times. Disapproval. People hurt. I didnt mean for that to happen...but life happens and we cant avoid it.

I love where I am now. People ask I you could go back and not date someone you sis, would you?

If I didnt date George, I wouldnt have been distraught by the breakup and decide to go do the MCT play again...where I met Michael.
If I hadnt dated Michael, I wouldnt have been encouraged by him to hang out with my friend's offisland...where I met Taylor.
If I hadnt dated Taylor, I wouldnt have done track that year (he told me I should still do because I am good...I doubted)...where I met Scott.
If I hadnt dated Scott, I wouldnt have decided to go to EFY to prove it to people I didnt believe. I was in such a bad place...but I went, and I met Shane. Then I stayed with Scott...and a year later decided to got to EFY again to find out if I do really still believe. And there was Shane again...

love them all for helping to lead me to Shane. Maybe I would have gotten there some other way...but that is ahrd to believe.
And I do believe. I KNOW this church is true. And it is so wonderful to have a man in my life who knows this too. Who supports me and who tries hard with me to do the right thing. Who was able to take me to the temple and get sealed with me for time and all eternity. Who holds the priesthood. He is the father of my amazing child. I cannot wait to have more with him. To see him raise them and teach them.

Yes..I am gushing. But those of you who have the person literally of your know what I mean. Its the love that no matter how hard we try, we can never explain in words.

How lucky am I to have Shane in my life. To have his love. To know that when he leaves for work, he is working for us. That when he comes home, he is coming home to me.

I love you Shane.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My Writing

So, those of you who have known me a long time KNOW how much I love to write. I remember being in 1st grade, declaring to everyone that someday I would publish books. My mom says when I was three I insisted on learning to write. I would sit at the table, pencil in hand, and yell out "Mom! How do you spell cat!" She would reply with C-A-T. Then a short moment later I would suddenly ask "Whats a C look like?"

By the time I got to Kindergarten, I knew how to write. And I loved it. I have devoured reading my whole life. Escaping into other worlds created by other minds...its a thrill! There is so much magic and amazement in the world of writing. By second grade I was put in an advanced reading and writing group. I was already at high school level. By 4th grade I had peaked at college level. Come high school, I had to take the madatory classes and would skate by with a super easy A, turning in three times the amount asked for every time. And by the time I enrolled in Running Start, I was filling my notebooks with poetry, book ideas, pulling friends in with short chapters I would right. I have had a handful of amazing teachers through my years that have supported me so much. They could see my passion and they were excited for me. Ms. Greeley, Ms. Bordi, Heidi McKenna (also lovingly known by our class as "mom")...I think of those three women often and how much of an impact they have had on me. I even lost a bet to Ms. Bordi, now owing her a published book...not that I think she remembers this.

But my one issue has always dragged me down...writer's block. See, I am one of those people who, even though everyone tells me otherwise, thinks my work is never good enough. Forget the fact of my advanced placement, my teacher's and friend's praise, my winning of many writing contests...I still never see my writing as being up to THAT par...what ever that par may be. So as much as I love it. As much as I dream to see it in print. To have others devour the stories... I never finish. I literally have over ten book ideas, with one chapter written for each. I have the whole world of the story plotted in my head, with a few blank spots here and there. And I never touch on them again.

I wish I could afford to take some writing classes again. To learn more techiques and rules and tips. But they are always pricey. And we have no money. So I grab writing tip books and dig in. Orson Scott Card (one of my all time favorite authors) wrote a book called "How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy." Its amazing. Inspiring. Yes, it has been helping. Along with the unending prodding from Shane. I will read him a blip from my newest writing, and he will soak it in. He has actually told me not to read to much for him...because he hates waiting for more.

So what to do?

I have started a blog for my writing. There isnt much there yet, being as I just started it a few days ago. Please, if you have the time, go there. Leave me tips. Tricks. Thoughts. Critiques. Help my mind spin up. Brain storm with me. You are all my friends and family. The best help I can get is from you.

Hopefully, soon, the worlds I have created will finally meet other waiting minds.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Last Few Weeks...

Holiday season seems to make time spin by faster than ever. Here I was a few weeks ago...posting about the Santa its almost halfway through January and I am finally back on here! Ok...sorry for the lack of detail...but here is a run down of the last few weeks!

It is so great having Christmas with a little kid in the house. Ok Rylend was more confused than excited. He couldn't understand why mom and dad were setting objects in front of him and LETTING him tear it apart. Rylend kept giving us a look like "Are you crazy!? Make up your minds!!"
But it was still a ton of fun. He got a huge bundle of new toys and goodies. Let me tell you, "big kid" toys are such a life saver. The "baby" toys he had before were long past boring him, and now he is so intrigued with the new goodies that he literally squeals when he sees them!
We cant's wait for next year and the years to come, when he comes to understand Christmas more and more and the excitement of Santa bubbles over. This is way too much fun.
Here are a few pics from Christmas!

After Christmas we all went and had new family pics taken. This Merritt clan is getting HUGE! Its funny when we all go walking in there, you can almost here the poor photographer sigh with instant exhaustion. There is now 12 people in this family...and it still has some way to grow! Rylend had a ton of fun. (of course, he is already VERY used to paparazzi haha!) Here are the pics!


So....nothing exciting here. Really. Shane's family was gone for the week, taking Cameron to the MTC. Yup! He has left for his two year mission to AUSTRALIA. We will miss will be without him. So Shane and I went up to their house to cuddle with the pets and enjoy a Matrix night. It was fun. We welcomed in the new year, not with a ball drop, but with "there is no spoon" action...ha! Then after midnight struck, we watched neighbors and people all over the Beaverton/Hillsboro area (they live on a hill with a great view) light of tons of fireworks. Nice and relaxing.

On the 2nd Rylend and I went up to the island to visit. Riding the train for 6 hours with a 9 month old who refuses to nap...I wont do it again. Shane couldnt get the time off to come too, so I had to bite through and try to find ways to keep him quiet enough so as not to drive my co-passengers too batty. When we finally got off, one of the ladies came up to and gave me a nice compliment. "I just wan you to know you are the best mom! You kept your cool the whole time with this little boy. He is very lucky to have you!" It was very nice to hear...but if only she had heard what was going through my head the last 6 hours...ha! Mommy's secret...
The visit was nice. I got to see my family and most of my friends for the week. Rylend adored watching his three cousins up there run all over the place (two are almost 2 and one is almost 4...) He quickly and easily became in total love with his PopPop (my dad). I even got to see my friend Jessie's baby girl Theresa (three months old!), watch the dress rehearsal for the HS play "Grease" (they are amazing...of course!) and enjoy a much desired SUSHI NIGHT...I miss those a ton.
Sucky part....RAIN.
So I was booked to leave on the train thursday morning. So of course wednesday night it really starts to rain. And rain. And for kicks...rain some more. Before you know it, just south of Seattle is flooded. They cancel ALL trains...close off I-5 and basically all surrounding areas... So I was stuck on the island for two more days.
This was the longest I had been away from Shane started dating? And Rylend had never NOT seen daddy for more than a come Friday we were both READY to go home. But travel arrangements are hard to make... So Shane and Zach decide it would be fun to make a road trip to Anacortes and pick us up at the ferry Saturday morning. Yay! We got home late Saturday afternoon and I LOVE being home!
I miss my family and friends there alot. I wish they would come and visit me...someday. It kind of feels like they all expect us to go there but will never make the same effort to come HERE. Its not that far... I wish they would.
Here are some pics!

So now I am home. Happy. VERY TIRED. And have updated you all. I will do more later! NIGHT!!!